Establishing ground rules before you play the game…
I have seen so many people walk into the Swinger world and Poly world jumping feet first into the deep end. For some…it all comes natural, which is a VERY rare thing. But no one can go in knowing exactly what they expect of their partner, themselves or what their partner expects of them without discussion. Quite frankly I am sick of running into people that don’t discuss things before they jump in the deep end. What they don’t understand is this causes serious feelings being hurt and drama that could be prevented.
There is also the concept of not knowing exactly what is okay with you until you try it and have the reaction. The thing to keep in mind here is patience and understanding. If something ends up not being comfortable for you once it happens and you thought it was going to be okay with you before, discuss it with your partner and let them know that you didn’t have the type of reaction you had expected and you aren’t ready for that yet, or may never be. But letting them know is key. I have talked to so many people who say “I have read up on a lot of Polyamory in books and online” or “I know myself and I know how I would react and that I would be okay with my partner with another person”. Comments like that mean nothing in the real world of Polyamory. Because you don’t know how you will truly react to something until you actually experience it.
This is why it is so important to talk with your partner(s) before hand. Let each other know what you are comfortable with or at least comfortable with trying out. And know that ideas, rules, boundaries and comfort can change and grow with the relationship, you and the people you are involved with.
Let me explain how Laz and I do it. We are in constant communication on the things that we expect from each other, want and need. After being together for 8 years it comes natural and easy for us. But lets say you are new. Before any given situation like a date or party or whatever you should always do a run down of the boundaries or rules you have set in your relationship. What you are comfortable with doing or not doing. Just what is expected in general with each other. Once these things have clearly been established stay within them. At the end of the situation, regroup. Discuss what happened. Figure out how you feel about what happened. Be patient. Keep in mind that if your partner stayed in the guidelines of what was put forth they have done no wrong. If they have done something that upset you or something that you discussed as being okay but you find your reaction was not what you expected, discuss it. Voice it. Talk to each other and come to compromises…re-evaluate and take the time to process individually and together. If need be, come back to the conversation after you processed feelings and reactions a bit. But it is important to always re-evaluate your situations as they come and know if a thought or feeling has changed since the action or situation.
Its an on going process. Even after 8 years Laz and I still do this. Granted there isn’t really ever a lot that changes at this point because we are so sure of where we stand, but we are more than open to realizing that as we grow and changes, our ideas and feelings do with the relationship. You need your partner(s) to know that the door is open and everything is always up for discussion.
Only you can make it work. And you are on the same page…then there is more of a chance that it will work…even if it does take time, patience and re-evaluation to get where you want to be.
Posted on October 1, 2012, in Polyamory, Sex, Sex, Swinging and tagged Balance, Change, Communication, Compromise, Definitions, Expectations, Getting together, Growing and Learning, Jealousy, Open Relationship, Polyamory, Polyfidelity, Priorities, Relationships, Sex, Suggestions, Swinging, Trust. Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.